Nigeria working to add value to local raw gold – minister


Nigeria is making an effort to make sure value is added to raw gold mined locally to attract foreigners and make the country a gold jewelry destination, said Olamilekan Adegbite, minister of mines and steel development, on Friday.

Speaking at a graduation ceremony for 21 selected youths trained in jewelry making in Abuja, the minister said the West African nation would soon become a gold jewelry-making destination.

“We discovered that our gold is leaving Nigeria shore daily in raw form to other countries,” Adegbite said.

He said the training, the first of its kind, was organized to strengthen the local production of jewelry, create jobs, increase livelihood standards and boost the creativity of Nigerians.

“We are going to retain our raw gold and add value to it and sell it to our people,” he said.

According to him, the gemstone and jewelry industry in the country remains underdeveloped, as gems are mined by artisanal operators and sold as rough stones in Germany, Indonesia, Sri Lanka and the United States.

He said value addition to Nigerian gold and gemstones was critical to the diversification of the current government, as it moves away from over-dependence on oil. Enditem

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